Akron-Canton Airport is D.C.-bound. US Airways added daily nonstop service between Akron and Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport in 2009, another significant achievement in what was another record year for the airport.
“We have never had access to any of the three Washington airports, but now we do, and we're ecstatic about it,” says Kristie Van Auken, senior vice president and chief communications officer at Akron-Canton Airport. “Washington, D.C., is a coveted slot."
Nearly 1.5 million passengers used the airport in 2008, nearly 6 percent better than the previous year and more than 3.5 times the number of passengers who flew Akron-Canton as recently as 10 years earlier. Even with Cleveland-Hopkins International Airport in the region, Akron-Canton is drawing passenger traffic throughout Northeast Ohio, Western Pennsylvania and even West Virginia.
“One of the key reasons why this airport has grown so much in popularity over the past 10 years is the introduction of low-fare service, especially fares provided by AirTran,” Van Auken says. “They are the carrier that deserves much credit for our growth, simply because of the good deals they provide travelers.”
AirTran started at Akron-Canton with nonstop service to Atlanta and then added New York City, Boston, Orlando, Tampa, Ft. Myers and Ft. Lauderdale.
“AirTran features big jets, and every flight has a comfortable business class section,” Van Auken says. “They offer low fares and high quality to business travelers, and AirTran helps to make Akron-Canton the envy of many communities our size across America.”
The airport also offers affordable fares to the West thanks to Frontier Airlines and its nonstop service to Denver. Akron-Canton also has Delta and United in its airline carrier lineup that can link passengers to international destinations.
“We don’t have the hassle and stress of big airports, plus we offer low fares,” Van Auken says. “Those fares are a big reason why we attract passengers from as far away as West Virginia. Families will drive here from 3 1/2 hours away to save $200 a ticket in this economy.”
The airport was established in 1946, and Van Auken credits government leaders for their wisdom in locating Akron-Canton along a busy interstate.
“Having an original on-ramp and an off-ramp built along Interstate 77, which is a main corridor in Ohio, was what set up this airport for success right from the start,” she says. “The interstate makes everything easy for the airlines, and just as important, it makes everything easy for our passengers.”